My Life in Books: The Secret Seven

I think I was about five when I discovered Enid Blyton’s series about seven intrepid child sleuths who went around solving mysteries (when they weren’t at school of course). It was the beginning of a life-long fascination with mystery stories.

I remember wanting to start a club like The Secret Seven, so I dragged along my best friend Helen to the shed at the end of our garden, which was going to be our club house, and we discussed how we would find mysteries to solve. We talked about tailing people, of planting secret microphones on them – all kinds of things. But we weren’t actually allowed to play beyond the end of the street, so all these plans came to naught.

I’ve had a lot of fun looking up these old books of childhood for cover images. The Secret Seven books are all still in print, with new modern covers. I don’t remember what the ones I read in the 1970s looked like. The one I’ve included here is from the original edition, which was long before my time. Unlike some other children’s books I haven’t re-read any of the Secret Seven books in adulthood, so I don’t know how they would rate with kids nowadays. I imagine Enid Blyton is rather dated these days. But there is something timeless about a group of children solving mysteries.

Since our short-lived club house gave us no mysteries to solve – we moved out of that house when I was six, to a flat that had no garden, let alone a shed – I had to limit my love of mysteries to books. But my love of mystery stories has been undiminished for nearly 40 years.

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5 comments so far

  1. Diane Dooley on

    I was more into The Famous Five. I wanted a dog, a boat, my own island and lashings of ginger ale.

    • sayssara on

      There will be a post about the Famous Five coming soon! I got into them a couple of years later…

  2. Annie Seaton (@annieseaton26) on

    Oh Sara,
    Secret Seven, Famous Five… I am sure that is where my love of British crime fiction began back in the sixties! I still have many of the old hardbound books…covers long gone!
    I now much prefer Peter Robinson, Val McDermid, Elizabeth George and Ian Rankin to anything from any other country!

    When I have visited the UK, I have kept my eyes open for those smugglers coves and little islands and ginger ale is still my favourite drink,

    Isn’t it interesting how our childhood loves stay with us and shape our lives!
    Of course.. don’t forget Anne of Green Gables for my love of story telling.

    • sayssara on

      Annie – I started this series because I began thinking about all the books of childhood that had shaped my life and love of reading. Do you mean ginger ale, or ginger beer? There is a difference….

      Anne of Green Gables wasn’t so big in the UK as Canada, so that one passed me by – first I knew of it was when I was in a musical production of it in high school (I was Mrs MacPherson…)

  3. Annie Seaton (@annieseaton26) on

    Ginger ale and ginger beer. Love them both!
    Which one did they drink…ginger beer?


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